Weekend Escape Ideas For Summer

by Chris Hartley - Mountain Designs

Weekend Escape Ideas For Summer

Summer is on its way, bringing with it the perfect conditions for a weekend escape. Whether you want a relaxing getaway with a coastal view or a thrilling adventure, we've got you covered with 10 weekend escape ideas to get you inspired for your next mini break. No matter where you are in Australia, there is a weekend escape waiting to be explored. Pack your bags, jump in the car and enjoy the warm weather that's coming your way.


For The Thrill-Seekers

Are you up for a super fun, fast and thrill-seeking weekend escape? These three destinations will get your adrenaline pumping and give you a weekend full of activities.


Great Barrier Reef, QLD

Located in the northern part of Queensland, the Great Barrier Reef is a must-see tourist destination for locals and interstate travellers alike. One of the seven wonders of the natural world, it is a mass of coral that spans over an incredible 3,000 kilometres running parallel to the Queensland coastline and is even visible from space. Thrill-seekers love the range of activities that are accessible on the Great Barrier Reef, including diving, snorkelling, sky diving, seaplane flights, hot air ballooning, helicopter joy rides, paddle boarding and even white-water rafting. Marine life is abundant, beaches are aplenty and there are over 800 operators within the marine park so finding someone to show you the ropes is a breeze.


Byron Bay, NSW

Most people head to Byron Bay for its beautiful beaches, chilled vibe and eclectic mix of locals and tourists (anyone up for some Chris Hemsworth spotting?), but it's also a goldmine for adventure seekers. Located just south of the Tweed River past the Queensland border, Byron Bay has an abundance of activities for an unforgettable weekend escape. From hot air ballooning, kayaking and scuba diving to mountain bike tours, whale watching and even taking a ride in a Gyrocopter, you won't be short of hair-raising adventures in Byron Bay. A number of food and music festivals occupy the Byron Bay calendar too so keep your eyes open for those highlights.


Tangalooma, QLD

Just a short boat ride from Brisbane, Tangalooma is an island that offers a range of exciting activities for a fun weekend away. Catch a boat over to the island and begin your adventure with dolphin feeding before you up the tempo and go parasailing, ATV quad bike touring and sand tobogganing. Take part in a jam-packed Desert Safari tour, snorkel the Tangalooma wrecks, or time your trip for whale watching, the adventures are endless.

The Incredible Natural Beauty Of The Great Barrier Reef
The Cape Byron Lighthouse In Byron Bay

The incredible natural beauty of the Great Barrier Reef (left) and the Cape Byron Lighthouse in Byron Bay (right). (Images courtesy of greatbarrierreef.org and byronbay.com)

For The Explorers

Studies show that taking a break and escaping into nature is good for the mind, body and soul. These getaways are for those who want to explore and spend some time reconnecting with the beautiful natural world that surrounds us.


Blue Mountains, NSW

In the rugged New South Wales hinterland lay the Blue Mountains. With a number of walks, hikes, cave tours, climbing routes and tourist attractions (like the World's Steepest Railway!), you'll have plenty to explore in the Blue Mountains region. Highlights of this World Heritage listed location include the Jenolan Caves, the spectacular Three Sisters rock formation, and the Six Foot Track.


Gold Coast Hinterland, QLD

Featuring a variety of campsites and accommodation options, the Gold Coast hinterland is the perfect place to get away and explore. Less than an hour away from Brisbane, there are plenty of national parks and mountains in this region that have trails ranging from short day hikes to longer weekend walks. If hiking isn't your thing, there are a lot of great food options and lookouts to explore in the Gold Coast hinterland and the beaches are never too far away.


The Kimberly, WA

On the other side of the nation, the Kimberley in Western Australia is a monumental Australian landmark. Explore the stunning gorges and rugged bushland, go four-wheel driving along the nearby beaches, enjoy a horse-riding tour in the outback or opt for a bushwalking experience. Make sure to visit Broome - home of magenta sunsets over white beaches - and the enormous domes of the Bungle Bungle Range in the Purnululu National Park. The Kimberley Region has plenty to offer.


Tasmania

While Tasmania has its fair share of exciting and thrilling adventures, they also have some of the most beautiful and picturesque walks and hikes in Australia. Spend a weekend in Tasmania exploring the gorgeous mountains and experience the beautiful landscapes that are only seen in the southernmost state of Australia. Where to start? Maybe try the Overland Track or Three Capes Track for hiking, capital city Hobart for views from Mount Wellington and food at the Salamanca Markets, Freycinet National Park, Cataract Gorge or the Port Arthur Heritage Listed historic site.

The Bungle Bungle Range In The Kimberley Region Of Western Australia
The Iconic Three Sisters In The Blue Mountains Of New South Wales

The Bungle Bungle Range in the Kimberley region of Western Australia (left) and the iconic Three Sisters in the Blue Mountains of New South Wales (right). (Images courtesy Tourism Australia and BlueMountainsAustralia.com)

For Relaxation

If you're all about a relaxing getaway, pack your bags. These three destinations will have you ready to set off for some much-needed rest and relaxation.


Hunter Valley, NSW

Known as the wine capital of Australia, the Hunter Valley in New South Wales is an amazing place to get away and recuperate for a weekend escape. Indulge in a pamper weekend sipping local wines or enjoy a night under the stars at one of many camping spots in the region.


Fraser Island, QLD

Just off the coast of Queensland, you only need to take a short ferry to reach Fraser Island, yet you will feel like you are a world away. The largest sand island in the world, it is renowned for Lake McKenzie (a perched lake fed only by rainwater), its flora and fauna (including Australia's purest strain of dingoes on the eastern coast and whale watching during migration season) and epic beach stretches (take on the sand highway of 75 Mile Beach). Relax on your weekend escape by pitching a tent and enjoying the quiet nights and seclusion, and if you're into fishing, don't forget your gear.


Ningaloo Coast, WA

Ningaloo Coast is a popular spot for travellers to visit when exploring the western side of Australia. This is the perfect destination for a weekend mini break to recharge your batteries. The only problem is you won't want to leave. A World Heritage-listed site, it is home to incredible marine life (humpback whales, turtles, rays and the elusive whale shark), the idyllic Turquoise Bay and some indulgent glamping hideaways for luxury living.

Swimming With Whale Sharks
Luxurious Outback Glamping

From swimming with whale sharks to luxurious outback glamping, the Ningaloo Coast in Western Australia is a perfect weekend escape. (Images courtesy of Tourism Australia and Tourism Western Australia)

Photo Credits

Images courtesy of:

Greatbarrierreef.org

Byronbay.com

Tourism Australia

BlueMountainsAustralia.com

Tourism Western Australia

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